This is where I commemorate a year's melodic birth, where I celebrate the end of a year and a half I waited for stars and ethics to fall in line, my perseverance paid off, poems written, a phone number awkwardly scrawled and haphazardly pushed across the table at the end of all complication. This is noting the five anxious days it took Mr. PNU to finally call.
This is remembering meeting him for a Friday night film I can barely recall, the sweaty palms and posturing I couldn't get right in the seat next to his, the texture of his arm briefly touching mine, the thrill of proximity, the problem of following Tilda Swinton and Tom Hiddleston through a plot when all my mind's focus belonged to him.
This is savoring the flavor of the Himalayan Kitchen, listening to his after-dinner thoughts, sharing a few of mine. This is the laughter and gravity, wandering through the City of Salt at night, picking our way along City Creek and happening upon the sleeping homeless wedged between some cobbled wall and the sidewalk. This is the monument of trusting him with the odd narrative of the month I spent in a homeless shelter in Santa Monica of the 90s, and the driving desire I've carried from that experience to make a difference in the lives of the lost.
Somewhere in this story is where he stops at a bridge, turns to face me, and asks if I ever tried to make something happen between us before it could. This is how I explained that upon employment as his TA I read the university's sexual harassment policy twice, and that I understood nothing could happen while he was my supervisor and I his grader even if I wanted it to.
This is where my throat catches in the culmination of all anxiety and hope, as he takes my hand, asking me if I would be his girlfriend now. And here I am, barely a year ago, exhaling an answer in a voice I'm not certain either of us heard, but that might be compared to the breath of a thousand sighing angels, or an exaltation of larks taking wing. But that first kiss that followed, it will forever defy description. We stole a dozen more as we continued journeying those magical May sidewalks, laughing "us" into creation until 4 a.m. as time crept so deep into morning that out of necessity I drove home to my sleeping children before they woke.
When I pulled into my cul de sac an hour later the birds sang at my arrival. My heart, time, and all the winged things, how they've sung ever since.